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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

Picking up where Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice left off, The Bad Miss Bennet takes readers on a wild Regency romp with Lydia Wickham, née Bennet, who finds herself in dire need of a new husband. Lydia was never the most upstanding of the Bennet sisters, but who ever said that moral rectitude was fun? At least she bested her elder sisters and was the first to get married. She…

The Bad Miss Bennet

by Jean Burnett

Overall Book Review:

Being a fan of all things Jane Austen, I tend to find myself picking up any and all ‘off-shoots’ from the original that people tend to write.  This novel, being based around Lydia–the youngest and most indiscreet Bennet–caught my attention, as she is not usually the focus of a Jane Austen continuation novel.

Unfortunately, it was somewhat disappointing.  Lydia is very much what you would expect: childish, impetuous and thoughtless.  One would hope that she would improve and learn something, but she never does.  She tends instead to dig herself deeper and deeper in trouble and think nothing of all of her indiscretions and ill-executed deeds.  She is focused very much on money, pleasure, and being everyone’s mistress, and takes absolutely no responsibility for her actions.  I suppose one would consider her to be very focused and applaud her for the fact that her attention never wavers from her goals, but her goals are definitely not anything lofty or worthwhile.

Her entire list of goals are to dance at Almack’s and live in Paris.  Will she be able to outwit her severe brother-in-law (Mr. Darcy, of course) and reach her goals or will he overrule her and make her become a boring old spinster after all?

Some of the other characters are much more fun: Jerry is a cad; Lydia’s friends, Miles and Selena, whom she stays with in London are a great example of a typical couple; Princess Charlotte is a hoot; Letitia Makepeace, to whom Lydia is sent to in Bath to a be a lady’s companion, is probably my favorite character in the entire book!  She is witty, full of wisdom (even if it is slightly misplaced at times), and always ready to help, aid, and abet Lydia, even though Lydia really didn’t deserve it.  But again, Lydia twists Mrs. Makepeace around her finger in order to obtain her own wants and desires, regardless of the thoughts and feelings of others.  The story IS funny at times, which is a redeeming point, but the comic relief isn’t really enough to save the novel.

Overall, if you are looking for a book without much substance, full of idiocy, murder, sex, and extremely silly antics, look no further than The Bad Miss Bennet.  Oh, and maybe you should be warned ahead of time–The Bad Miss Bennet ends on a cliff-hanger, so be on the lookout for perhaps an even ‘Badder’ Miss Bennet in the future!

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Pegasus

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language: 3 religious exclamations; 7 mild obscenities.

Violence/Gore: Two women fight over jewelry (funny); A few second hand reports of hangings, murder, robberies, and death; a character punches another character in the face; a character allegedly drowns a dog; a bandit is shot after a robbery; a character is shot in the head; a character is stabbed.

Sex/Nudity: Many innuendoes and crude jokes about sex and private parts; a few references to characters looking at a lady’s bosom; discussions about how to dress (lowering bodices and lifting skirts); many references to mistresses and prostitutes; many references to marital duty in bed; a character tells how castratos are made; many allusions to going to bed with many different people; references to various sexual orientations (homosexuality, beastiality, bi-sexuality, incest, etc); some discussions about lovers and how they perform; many caresses and touching in amorous ways (legs, knee squeezes, licking ears, pinching rear, etc.); characters embrace, kiss and flirt often; 2 short mature discussions on sex; 2 one page depictions of sex without explicit detail.

Mature Subject Matter:

Gambling, Sex, Prostitution, Murder, Death, Stealing, Kidnapping.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

Characters drink throughout: brandy, wine, champagne, etc.  Characters often go to clubs to get drunk.  A character is accused of spending all of his money on strong drink.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

I read anything and everything. I love the smell of books. My kids giggle at me when I open a new box of books from Amazon and I inhale the new pages and rub the shiny new spine against my face! 🙂 My husband just rolls his eyes at me and is grateful he has me on a budget! 🙂